Many people try to establish family budgets in order to save money, but find they have trouble actually implementing their budget ideas and staying the course. Often you might feel like you are within your budget, only to get to the end of the week or month and realize you are not. What are some family budget ideas for saving money without losing out on having fun?
First, many people create family budgets without being realistic about day to day expenses. You should try and cut costs, of course, but do not expect yourself to go from getting Starbucks every day, to getting it never. Instead, be reasonable and plan for once or twice a week.
Second, food is a big part of many family budgets. One thing to keep in mind is that store brands often offer the same quality as big name brands, without carrying the higher price tag. It is worth experimenting with to see if your family might not be able to tell the difference between store brand and the other brand. This can save you money especially where cereal and frozen foods are concerned.
Third, if you are interested in family budget recipes, there are a lot of sites available online to help you out. My favorite low cost recipe is vegetarian chili. All you need is one large onion, one can of black beans, one can of corn, one can of chili beans, a packet of chili mix, and either fresh or canned tomatoes. If you want more bulk, add potatoes or an additional can of beans. Cook them up together in a pot and voila! Enough chili to feed a family for about five dollars.
Fourth, family budgets should establish a set amount of times the family will eat out or participate in more expensive hobbies like going to the movies. While this does not need to be strictly followed, families are often surprised to realize that they actually eat out five times a month on average rather than three, for example.
Fifth, many people are interested in budget family vacation ideas. Camping and hiking are great options for saving money. Not only will you have some quality bonding time around the campfire or while fishing and swimming at the lake, but you will save a ton of money on everything from food to rooming costs. Just make sure to bring the bug spray.
Good luck with your family budgeting!